THE new Vale Conservative group leader has unveiled his vision for the Vale and challenged fellow councillors to back the group as a minority administration.

Cllr Vincent Bailey, with 14 other Tory councillor colleagues expressed a vote of no confidence in the then leader Cllr John Thomas, on April 29, which led him to announcing that he would tender his resignation at the next full council meeting.

Councillors will vote on who will lead the administration at the AGM on May 20.

But Cllr Bailey said his group was open to working with fellow councillors willing to put the public first.

Eight Conservatives, including ousted Cllr Thomas quit the party, making the likelihood of a minority Tory administration unlikely.

But Cllr Bailey said he believed his group has brought forward “the plan the public wants the council to deliver”.

Cllr Bailey said: “Whilst I accept that a minority administration is unlikely to gather enough support at the AGM, we firmly believe that this is the plan the public wants the council to deliver.

“We exist to serve the public - not council officials, and not for Welsh Government plaudits. And under my leadership, a Conservative administration will proudly put the people of the Vale of Glamorgan first.

“Naturally, we are open to working with other councillors who share those ideals.

“Others - including those who resigned from the Conservative party - will have to explain to voters where they stand on these issues - and I would urge them to back us, rather than propping up a Labour administration that was rejected by the Vale at the last election.”

Cllr Bailey said he had a six-point plan for the Vale.

He pledged to deliver the Dinas Powys bypass; stop inflation-busting council tax rises; scrap proposed parking charges; review the local development plan (LDP) to curb inappropriate development; protect rural schools; and oppose the Barry Biomass plant.

Cllr Bailey said that he was also keen to improve engagement with the public, after a series of hugely unpopular decisions taken by the existing cabinet.

He said: “During the elections in 2017, we promised to build a stronger relationship with local residents by consulting them on key decisions.

“Unfortunately, too many people feel that their views are simply being ignored and that Vale consultations are just tick box exercises. Take the proposals around car parking charges, or the closure of Llancarfan School. I don’t think anyone outside of the Civic Offices believes that those decisions weren’t already done deals, and that’s simply unacceptable.

“Another good example is the council’s failure to listen to the public over Penarth’s original Victorian lamp posts.

“I’ve been criticised for wanting to listen to the people who elected me, and I make no apologies for that. Under my leadership, that’s exactly what would happen and whilst I do accept that there are difficult decisions to be taken, we have to take the public with us - not ignore their legitimate concerns.”